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The Texas Tech men’s tennis team (19-5) received its bid in the 2008 NCAA Championship today, and will travel to Ann Arbor, Mich., to face the No. 51 Harvard Crimson (15-6) in the first round beginning Sat., May 10, at 2 p.m. (EDT). The second round will see the winner between Tech and Harvard against host No. 16 Michigan and Western Michigan on Sun., May 11.
“We’re very excited to be included in the field of 64. Harvard is a very good team and won the Ivy League this year, and is going to be a noteworthy first round opponent. If we get past them, then we have the potential to play Michigan on their home courts,” reflected head coach Tim Siegel after the bracket was released. “We are just excited for the opportunity to have a chance to make it back to the Sweet 16.”
Now seven of the past
14 seasons the men’s team has reached the NCAA Championship and has been
included among the top 30-ranked teams in the nation, as well as having singles
and doubles players ranked in the top 100. Two-thousand five was a milestone
year for Siegel as he led his 15th ranked Red Raiders to a Sweet 16
berth and was named the Big 12 Coach of the Year and Co-Region Coach of the Year
by his peers. The team returned to the NCAA Championship last season after
missing out in 2006, advancing to the second round after defeating Virginia
Tech ended its 2008
regular season campaign with a solid 19-5 duals record, 4-3 in the Big 12, and
is currently ranked No. 17 nationally. The team narrowly missed its first ever
regular season conference title as it headed into the last week of Big 12 play
tied for first with both Baylor and Texas. The team couldn’t quite capitalize on
the Bears’ home-court advantage losing 5-2, and landing tied for second with
Oklahoma State heading to the Big 12 Championships.
After receiving the fourth seed in the championship, Tech suffered a heart-wrenching 4-3 loss this past weekend to host Texas A&M, falling just short of the 20th win needed to secure a spot at hosting a 2008 NCAA Regional. Siegel has sparked Texas Tech to its first winning record in conference play since 2005, and has raised the team’s overall winning percentage from .583 a year ago to .792 in 2008.
The Big 12 Conference released yesterday its selections for all-conference singles and doubles players, as well as naming Tim Siegel as the Big 12 Coach of the Year. The Red Raiders No. 33 Bojan Szumanski and No. 119 Sinisa were unanimously named All-Big 12 singles recipients, while the 13th ranked team of Szumanski and Christian Rojmar garnered their second-straight All-Big 12 doubles honor.
“I’m very pleased for this group of guys,” said Siegel. “What an accomplishment for Bojan to get this award for three years, and Sinisa is definitely one of the top No. 2 players in the country. Bojan and Christian have had a tremendous season, I’m looking forward to seeing them play once again in the NCAA Tournament.”
For more information of the NCAA Championship and a complete bracket, log on to the men’s tennis page at www.texastech.com or www.ncaasports.com.